Fight Island continues this weekend and UFC expert Kieran Cobley has two selections for Saturday night's main card.
The second fight night on Fight Island is shaping up to be an absolute corker, with a flyweight title bout headlining the card as Deiveson Figueirdo and Joseph Benavidez go toe to toe in a highly anticipated rematch, and the undercard also looking fantastic.
Jack Hermansson and Kelvin Gastelum will face off in a middleweight bout that could have a big influence on the rankings, and superb striker Mark Diakiese will also be in action as he takes on Rafael Fiziev.
An easy decision to start...
The showdown between Jack Hermansson and Kelvin Gastelum is one I am really excited to see.
Hermansson is one of the top European fighters in the UFC right now and Kelvin Gastelum is one of the toughest in the middleweight division, both in his fighting ability and in terms of his ability to take a punch.
Gastelum has only ever been finished once, and nine of his 21 pro fights have gone the distance, including an absolute war with current middleweight champion Israel Adesanya where he was dropped a couple of times.
Hermansson is also no stranger to going the the distance, with 25% of his pro fights going to judges scorecards.
It'll be interesting to see the approaches each man is forced to take, as both are great wrestlers, meaning the likelihood of either securing a takedown and assuming control (which is how both usually finish fights) is unlikely.
With that in mind this is expected to run and we'll back it to go to a decision at 10/11.
Gifted Diakiese made to wait
Mark Diakiese v Rafael Fiziev is another fascinating bout and one I look forward to watching, especially with how gifted a striker Diakiese is.
The Doncaster-based fighter has a very traditional striking background based in Taekwon-do and Kickboxing, and has enhanced his skills by training with some of the best kickboxers in the world out in the Netherlands.
With that being said, I don’t have confidence in him finishing the fight and that's the route to a value odds-against selection.
The majority of Diakiese’s six knockouts came during his time in the regional European scene, and he hasn’t scored a knockout win since March 2017.
Fiziev will also be a tough man to put away, having only been finished once - when he was caught by a spinning back kick on his UFC debut.
I expect Diakiese to push the pace with his striking and for Fiziev to try and neutralise this by shooting for takedowns that Diakiese should be able to fend off or get up from, having been trained by grappling ace Danny Mitchell.
At 5/4, expect the Doncaster man to win via decision.
Posted at 1320 BST on 16/07/20
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